The Righteous Brothers

20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of the Righteous Brothers

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Although they had a handful of solid hits like 1963's "Little Latin Lupe Lu," 1964's "Koko Jo," and 1966's "(You're My) Soul & Inspiration," the Righteous Brothers will always be remembered for the masterful "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling" from 1964. Written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil (who also wrote "(You're My) Soul & Inspiration") and produced by Phil Spector in his trademark Wall of Sound style, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling" sets an ominous and emotionally ravished tone from its opening line ("You never close your eyes...) and then builds on even more powerfully from there. Far from being another of Spector's brilliantly crafted teen symphonies, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling" is instead a thoroughly adult one, and the desperation that builds in Bill Medley's lead vocal (and is echoed by Bobby Hatfield's impassioned call and response interjections) comes from a man who truly understands what has been lost and is facing the darkest night of his very soul. It is a phenomenal record, and the centerpiece of any album it is on, including this one, which collects the Righteous Brothers' essential '60s recordings (as well as their 1974 reunion hit "Rock and Roll Heaven"). There are deeper and better compilations out there, but the bottom-line sides are here, including "Little Latin Lupe Lu," "Koko Joe" (in the rarely anthologized original single version), "(You're My) Soul & Inspiration," "Unchained Melody," "White Cliffs of Dover," and, of course, the classic "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling."

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